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California

Former LAPD officer gets probation in child pornography case

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A former Los Angeles police officer was sentenced to five years of probation on Thursday after pleading no contest to possessing child pornography.

Clark Warren Baker, 61, must also attend 52 weeks of counseling and register as a sex offender for life, the Los Angeles County district attorney’s office said in a news release.

Baker was arrested in April after a prior search of his Hollywood Hills home turned up an external hard drive that contained child pornography, investigators said. He pleaded no contest to one felony count of possession of child pornography in May and had faced up to three years in prison.

Baker was employed by the Los Angeles Police Department from 1980 to 2000, a department spokeswoman previously told The Times.

The former officer was convicted of battery in 1992 after he was accused of slapping, kicking and dragging a 21-year-old Salvadoran immigrant while assigned to the Valley’s traffic division. An internal LAPD review board had previously cleared him of misconduct charges stemming from the case.

Baker’s conviction was later overturned by an appeals panel, which ruled a prosecutor improperly made reference to the Rodney King trial and turned Baker’s case into a referendum on police reform at the time.

Times staff writer James Queally contributed to this report.

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